YES! But your statement is comparable to a Green Party activist saying, "First let's end the water crisis, and then we'll address animal issues."
If we weren't killing animals to begin with, there wouldn't be a water crisis! (Nor global warming nor global hunger, nor an energy, environmental, population or water crisis!)
"Destiny, or karma, depends upon what the soul has done about what it has become aware of."
--Christian (reincarnationist) mystic Edgar Cayce
Vegan author John Robbins provides these points and facts in his Pulitzer Prize nominated Diet for a New America (1987):
Half the water consumed in the U.S. irrigates land growing feed and fodder for livestock. The water that goes into a 1,000 lb. steer could float a destroyer. It takes 25 gallons of water to produce a pound of wheat, but 2,500 gallons to produce a pound of meat. If these costs weren't subsidized by the American taxpayers, the cheapest hamburger meat would be $35 per pound!
Subsidizing the California meat industry costs taxpayers $24 billion annually. Livestock producers are California's biggest consumers of water. Every tax dollar the state doles out to livestock producers costs taxpayers over seven dollars in lost wages, higher living costs and reduced business income. Seventeen western states have enough water supplies to support economies and populations twice as large as the present.
Huge amounts of water wash away livestock excrement. U.S. livestock produce twenty times as much excrement as the entire human population, creating sewage which is ten to several hundred times as concentrated as raw domestic sewage.
Animal wastes cause thrice as much water pollution than does the U.S. human population; the meat industry causes thrice as much harmful organic water pollution than the rest of the nation's industries combined.
Meat producers, the number one industrial polluters in our nation, contribute to half the water pollution in the United States.
John Robbins quotes the USDA as admitting, "...halting soil erosion and degradation would be prohibitively expensive..." and that if current trends continue, "it is just a matter of time until the people of the United States, the inheritors of the world's richest farmlands, will be forced to depend on foreign imports for food."
Similarly, if we weren't killing animals in the first place, there wouldn't be a soil erosion crisis!
Nearly 75% of the grain grown and 50% of the water consumed in the U.S. are used by the meat industry. (Audubon Society)
It takes nearly one gallon of fossil fuel and 5,200 gallons of water to produce just one pound of conventionally fed beef. (Mother Jones)
The following points and facts are excerpted from Please Don't Eat the Animals (2007) by the mother-daughter writing team of Jennifer Horsman and Jaime Flowers:
Factory farm pollution is the primary source of damage to coastal waters in North and South America, Europe, and Asia. Scientists report that over sixty percent of the coastal waters in the United States are moderately to severely degraded from factory farm nutrient pollution. This pollution creates oxygen-depleted dead zones, which are huge areas of ocean devoid of aquatic life.
Half of all fresh water worldwide is used for thirsty livestock. Producing eight ounces of beef requires an unimaginable 25,000 liters of water, or the water necessary for one pound of steak equals the water consumption of the average household for a year.
"It seems disingenuous for the intellectual elite of the first world to dwell on the subject of too many babies being born in the second- and third-world nations while virtually ignoring the overpopulation of cattle and the realities of a food chain that robs the poor of sustenance to feed the rich a steady diet of grain-fed meat."
--Jeremy Rifkin, pro-life AND pro-animal author, Beyond Beef: The Rise and Fall of the Cattle Culture, and president of the Greenhouse Crisis Foundation
"Carl Pope could probably affect the world more by being a vegetarian than through his job as president of the Sierra Club."
According to the editors of World Watch, July/August 2004:
"The human appetite for animal flesh is a driving force behind virtually every major category of environmental damage now threatening the human future--deforestization, topsoil erosion, fresh water scarcity, air and water pollution, climate change, biodiversity loss, social injustice, the destabilization of communities and the spread of disease."
In a phone conversation with Greg Sims in the '90s, when I expressed exasperation at the inability of pro-life Christians to grasp that vegetarianism is nonviolence to humans and animals alike (where do they think their meat comes from?), Greg responded, "Tell them we can't end the killing of the unborn until we first end the killing of animals."
You'd think pro-lifers would immediately understand the animal right-to-lifers!
"When we turn to the protection of animals, we sometimes hear it said that we ought to protect men first and animals afterwards...By condoning cruelty to animals, we perpetuate the very spirit which condones cruelty to men."
The fate of the animals and the fate of man are interconnected. (Ecclesiastes 3:19)
A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, worshipped worldwide by millions of Vaishnavaite Hindus, briefly touched upon the issue of abortion in 1974, when discussing the institutionalized killing of billions of animals in the slaughterhouses:
"Who are these children being killed? They are these meat-eaters. They enjoyed themselves when so many animals were killed and now they're being killed by their own mothers. People do not know how nature is working. If you kill you must be killed. If you kill the cow, who is your mother, then in some future lifetime your mother will kill you. Yes. The mother becomes the child, and the child becomes the mother.
"We don't want to stop trade, or the production of grains and vegetables and fruit. But we want to stop these killing houses. It is very, very sinful. That is why all over the world they have so many wars. Every ten or fifteen years there is a big war--a wholesale slaughterhouse for humankind. But these rascals -- they do not see it, that by the law of karma, every action must have its reaction."
In a 1979 essay entitled "Abortion and the Language of Unconsciousness," contemporary Hindu spiritual master Ravindra-svarupa dasa (Dr. William Deadwyler) explains in terms of a secular slippery slope argument, familiar to pro-lifers:
"A (spiritually) conscious person will not kill even animals (much less very young humans) for his pleasure or convenience. Certainly the unconsciousness and brutality that allows us to erect factories of death for animals lay the groundwork for our treating humans in the same way."
Again: your statement is comparable to a Green Party activist saying, "First let's end the water crisis, and then we'll address animal issues."
In the April 1995 issue of Harmony: Voices for a Just Future, a peace and justice periodical on the religious left, Catholic civil rights activist Bernard Broussard similarly concludes:
"...our definition of war is much too limited and narrow. Wars and conflicts in the human kingdom will never be abolished or diminished until, as a pure matter of logic, it includes the cessation of war between the human and animal kingdoms.
"For, if we be eaters of flesh, or wearers of fur, or participants in hunting animals, or in any way use our might against weakness, we are promoting, in no matter how seemingly insignificant a fashion, the spirit of war.'"
The "might makes right" mentality that makes abortion possible begins with what we humans do to other animals.
"Those who kill animals for food will be more prone than vegetarians to torture and kill their fellow men."
This is nice to know. One thing you should keep in mind is that both Jesus and Buddha lived in a time that people could not take long baths or showers. You should cut your showers to no more than 10 minutes tops.